SWP threatens legal action after NUS proposes campus ban over ‘rape apologism’

The Socialist Workers’ Party (SWP) has threatened legal action after a motion submitted to the NUS proposed banning it from campus over alleged “rape apologism”.

Motion 5 to the NUS National Executive Council (NEC), titled “SWP Rape Apologism”, proposed support for students’ unions in stopping the SWP or any of its “front organisations” from being invited to campus.

Amendment 5a, which added to the motion, went further, calling on NUS officers to refuse to speak at SWP events, or those of its alleged front organisations including Stand Up To Racism.

The SWP was accused of covering up rape after one of its senior members, known only as ‘Comrade Delta’, was accused of sexually assaulting a young female member.

The party reportedly handled the matter through their own Disputes Committee as they did not want police involvement, clearing Comrade Delta of the charges levelled against him.

Many members subsequently left as the party was thought to have covered up rape and the SWP have continuingly denied any accusations of a ‘cover up’.

NUS Womens’ Officer Hareem Ghani, who proposed Amendment 5a, tweeted an email sent to the NUS senior leadership, in which the SWP calls on the NUS to withdraw the motion.

The party calls the claims “serious but unsubstantiated”, and says that Stand Up To Racism is not controlled by the SWP.

The email reads: “If passed, this motion would further encourage what can only be termed vigilantism and is likely to be result in our student members facing further harassment, abuse and intimidation while on campus, only this time with the official support of the NUS.

“If this motion is passed thus sanctioning harassment and intimidation of our members then we reserve the right as a party and also as individual members of the SQP to take legal action against the NUS.

Ghani declared the email a “transparent and superficial” attempt at co-opting liberation rhetoric, whilst former student and sabbatical officers noted that the SWP have threatened such legal action before.


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